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Awww, now, gee whiz..... doing a math proof can be as exciting and
exhilarating as any other form of discovery, and doing so first can save
one many stubbed toes, later.
After all, Codd's proofs led the way, as did Knuth's, and were not derived
from existing advanced art but from theory and science. While it probably
goes both ways, some proofs coming from experience and others derived
purely from theory. saying that waiting on proofs makes me a cave man who
is frightened of tomorrow is just personal.
Which is something I will not respond to, :), other than to say that if
Curie had done the math, used the full scientific method, waited for
results and included advancements from other scientists, maybe she would
not have died of radiation poisoning.
At 10:07 AM 8/25/2003 -0500, Bullard, Claude L (Len) wrote:
>It should be noted that this water cooler list has
>produced best practices at times. Of particular
>interest is Roger Costello's leadership as evidenced
>by www.xfront.com .
>His technique has been straightforward. From time
>to time, he asks a question or series of questions
>on a topic. Interested parties with relevant experience
>answer. One might consider that anecdotal except that
>each answer published on this list is usually met with
>critique either from Roger or from other members, or all.
>Roger sorts these out and responds eventually with a
>synthesized and winnowed presentation. Xfront, as a
>result, has become an excellent resource with examples
>vetted by experience.
>Mathematical proofs and elegance have their place. So
>does experience and distillation. This may someday prompt
>a mathematical investigation of why these practices work,
>and that investigation may uncover even deeper principles.
>These will be codified, studied, and taught. They might
>even improve the working systems. Time will tell.
>Markup systems emerged from the publishing communities made
>up of editors, typesetters, print system manufacturers,
>publishers and even some lawyers and computer scientists.
>Now, it is clearly in the hands of and under the control
>of the computer scientists. Make of it what you can but
>keep in mind that those from whom it originates were solving
>specific problems and generalizing from these, not creating
>mathematical edifices. Between the pragmatic and the elegant,
>there is a wealth of applications to be built and those that
>build find the proofs they need in the running code and
>their stubbed toes.
>That is why it's called the 'bleeding' edge. If one needs
>proofs first, one is frightened of tomorrow instead of
>excited by the prospect of discovery. Prudence, not prudish.
>From: Rick Marshall [mailto:email@example.com]
>that's why there's conservative people and risk taking people and bits
>in between. you may have to wait until it's proven best practice - rdbms
>technology took at least 15 years to be accepted as such, and to a large
>extent i think that what was delivered was proven best brochures and
>proven tier one suppliers - neither has a lot to do with proven best
>technology - but this approach meets all sorts of contractual
>i guess i'm lucky in having a number of clients who have a different
>approach and encourage use of sometimes experimental techniques to try
>and get a business advantage.
>in 10 years or so the experience of early adopters will provide the
>proven technology you need for more conservative projects.
>it's all part of our complex business :)
>The xml-dev list is sponsored by XML.org <http://www.xml.org>, an
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>The list archives are at http://lists.xml.org/archives/xml-dev/
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